Free-agent catcher A.J. Pierzynski could have called it a career after 17 MLB seasons, but he will play at least one more year after reportedly signing a contract with the Atlanta Braves on Wednesday.’s Mark Bowman provided the details of Pierzynski’s new deal:

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported on Friday, Dec. 26, the financial details of the deal:

Bowman had previously reported on the Atlanta Braves’ interest in acquiring the veteran:

With Ross off the table after signing with the Cubs, Pierzynski became the next-best option for the Braves.

Pierzynski, 37, has played for six different clubs—most recently with the St. Louis Cardinals in 2014. At this late stage, all Atlanta can expect out of Pierzynski is for him to play a serviceable backup role behind the plate.

Having been voted as the game’s most hated player in a 2012 poll, controversy has surrounded Pierzynski at almost every turn.

Stories have surfaced about his antics, and he addressed the matter in October.

“A whole lot of them have been proven to not be true,” said Pierzynski, per Sporting News’ Erin Faulk. “But fiction’s always better than the truth. Nobody wants to hear the truth. It doesn’t sell newspapers or gets hits online.”

Before the Boston Red Sox designated Pierzynski for assignment last year, a report from WEEI’s Rob Bradford described how his personality did not mesh well at all in the clubhouse. Some Red Sox players even spoke with the front office and coaches about the issue.

That is a risk Atlanta is taking on in acquiring Pierzynski. One positive is that Pierzynski is still a better hitter than most catchers, with a career average of .281 as proof.

Considering he had been a member of four different teams since 2012, it will be interesting to see how Pierzynski will blend in with his new teammates. If he can understand his role and embrace it, this latest transition may go more smoothly.

If the signing doesn’t work out, at least Atlanta hasn’t invested a lot of time or money in Pierzynski, whose potential to be a steal on the open market is enough to justify the short-term commitment.

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